Tuesday, July 12, 2011

Real party: a black/white foodie bridal shower

Libby's shower was a huge success and you'll see there was no shortage of food or cocktails.  That's my kind of shower.

I planned a black/white foodie-themed shower for Libby because her wedding colors are black and white and she is a huge foodie, I like to keep themes personal and relevant.  I incorporated a lot of Libby's favorite foods into the Italian-inspired menu.

Special thanks to Libby's sisters and future sister-in-laws for helping to provide the booze!  And a HUGE thank you to my friend Kristin who helped out with the shower all day.

Here are all the details...
I served a "Blackberry Bridetini" signature cocktail which consisted of homemade blackberry simple syrup, vodka and club soda.  The drink was light and refreshing with a hint of sweetness. 
The template for the paper goods is from the Wedding Chicks blog (meant for wedding invitations but I used the scroll for the bridal shower invitation and carried it through with menu cards).
For a non-alcoholic option we had Italian soda from Trader Joes.
Here's Libby, the cute bride-to-be sipping her Blackberry Bridetini.
Kristin, my helper for the day....taking a well-deserved break for a cocktail.
I served cheese and bread/crackers/fruit as an appetizer.  Libby is obsessed with bread and cheese.  I also created a mini crostini bar.  Guests could build their own crostini and choose from three toppings; bruschetta, white bean and caper and artichoke parmesan (full menu below with links to recipes).

More bread than we needed.  One thing I have learned...though I think I can plan one bad-ass party, I have no idea how to estimate appropriate amounts of food.  I bought way too much food and now have 2 pounds of mozzarella, 2 baguettes and dozens of cupcakes sitting in my fridge.

We served Italian pasta salad (brought by Libby's sister-in-law, Suzie) and proscuitto-wrapped melon with a lime drizzle for lunch.
Build-your-own caprese sandwiches served with foccacia or ciabbata.  The gorgeous basil is from the Mpls Farmers' Market.

By the time we served dessert everyone had eaten quite a bit plus it was 90 degrees out.  Yeah...it was hot as hell.  But for an outdoor shower I will take heat over rain any day.

Dessert included brownie bites (made by Kristin, they were a big hit) and I made oreo cupcakes. I brought these to work on Monday and received rave reviews.

I decorated the tent with black and white paper lanterns.  Thanks to my hubs and brother-in-law, Drew for helping with set-up.
I kept the flowers pretty simple with white mums and hydrangea purchased from Trader Joes for only $12.  I put them in bud vases, apothecary jars and varying sizes of cylinder vases. 

Libby received a wedding tree as a gift from her mom (purchased from Etsy) that will be her guest book at the wedding.  Guests put a finger print on the tree and sign their name, great idea for a fall wedding (Libby got the idea from our friend Nicole who is getting married in October.)

Now for the full menu:

Italian menu

Build-your-own crostini; bruschetta (purchased from Trade Joes, white bean and caper, artichoke parmesan)

Main course
Build-your-own caprese sandwiches
Proscuitto-wrapped melon with a lime drizzle
Italian pasta salad
Parmesan garlic kettle chips

Brownie bites
Oreo cupcakes

Blackberry bridetini (blackberry simple syrup, vodka, club soda)
Italian soda
White wine
Red wine

Whew, hungry yet?!

Congrats to Libby and Jason on their upcoming wedding!  I can't wait!


  1. The shower was amazing and I loved all the food! I coudn't have asked for anything more! I loved being able to celebrate with my family and friends!!!


  2. Looks like an amazing party! All of the food looks so delicious!


  3. Looks gorgeous! Love the blackberries and the oreo cupcakes...I would have loved that party as I am also obsessed with cheese/bread...who isn't really....

  4. Wow, that looks amazing! The bread, cheese and sandwiches are making me super hungry already today! The blueberry drink looks interesting as well!

  5. For those of you who love cookies 'n cream ice cream, those cupcakes taste JUST like it and are to die for!

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  7. Looks like a great party! Those 'bridetinis' look delicious!!

  8. Everything looks fabulous! Awesome job, Jenna!!

  9. The food looks delish! I've tried Oreo cupcakes before and the recipe I used turned out uber-dry. Yours look way better!

  10. The Oreo cupcakes look outstanding. Nom.

  11. Everything looks wonderful! Love the decor!

  12. Super sweet party!! Everything tied in so beautifully. Where did you get the tent? Rental?

  13. Every detail is incredible!

  14. Fabulous! I'm sure the bride-to-be was overwhelmed with gratitude. And, I always feel that it is better to have too much food than too little. Sometimes the hubs and I eat party leftovers for the entire week after a good party!

  15. Great job, Jenna!

  16. How spectacular! While this event may look a little fussy, a closer look shows that it's casual while still having that chic twist. Fantastic!

  17. Inspiring as usual! Great job. :)

  18. Great job Jenna! I'm sure Libby had a blast! That's awesome she got a Thumb Print Tree... I know I am super excited about mine!


  19. i love this! i absolutely adore throwing color themed parties! great inspiration

  20. So beautiful, your friends must cherish you for all the love you put into that shower.

  21. Those blackberry bride-tinis look delicious!!

    ~ Clare x

  22. The entire food spread looks absolutely delicious, and I agree those bride-tinis sound really good, too! Lovely party...congrats!

  23. Everything looks amazing. Great pictures! Looks like the party was a great success! The picture of the cupcakes made my mouth water!

  24. I was lucky to get one (okay two) of those oreo cupcakes on Monday and it was by far THE BEST cupcake I've ever eaten! Perfect density paired with the best frosting and oreo crunch. Amazing. Great job on the shower, Jenna!

    - Sasha

  25. Damn girl, this is amazing! Loving *every* detail! I'm hiring you for my next party, that's for sure.

  26. Wow. This is amazing. Have you heard that I am getting married next year??? Hint, hint... :)

  27. It all looks delicious, but it's the white bean and caper spread that has caught my eye for making very, very soon. Thanks!!

  28. GORGEOUS! Love the b/w themed party. The blackberries on the toothpicks are a great idea!

  29. Looks amazing! Love the blackberry drink idea and that is also my favorite way to eat melon :)

  30. I love the menu! I have throw a bridal shower for my sister in LA (I live in Chi-town) in October, so I may use some of your ideas since I'm planning it from out of town! her colors are red and they got engaged in Italy so I was thinking of doing an Italian theme!